Sergeant's DUI charge frustrates MADD members - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Sergeant's DUI charge frustrates MADD members

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SPOKANE, Wash. - Spokane Police Sergeant Bradley Thoma's arrest on a DUI charge has sent shock waves throughout the Inland Northwest and the arrest has upset none more than members of the organization 'Mothers Against Drunk Driving.'

Thoma was arrested on the DUI charge after he rear-ended a woman near Newport Highway and Farwell Rd. Wednesday evening.

Spokane Police Sergeant Bradley Thoma was cited for DUI and released Wednesday

The 51-year-old woman was not injured and she proceeded to follow Thoma to a nearby parking lot where Spokane County sheriff's deputies took him in to custody. Thoma was cited for DUI and released.

The incident has members of MADD and others in the area upset that a police officer made such a dangerous decision.

"My 3-year-old son was killed by a 17 time repeat drunk driver," said MADD member Linda Thompson.

Thompson says after her son Trevor was killed 23 years ago she decided to dedicate her life to change the system and educate the public about prevention.

She says she's heard from many people around Spokane County about how frustrated they are that Sergeant Thoma made the choice to drink and drive.

"To have someone in law enforcement who is really held to higher standards make that decision, it made me sick and sad for him, his decision was so poor," said Thompson.

Thompson says she still has the greatest respect for the Spokane Police Department, Washington State Patrol and other agencies and that's why it's so hard for her to understand how this could happen.

Thompson says she hopes that this situation can be used to generate community awareness and that everyone should make the choice not to drink and drive.

As for the case against Sergeant Thoma, he plead not guilty of the DUI charge, even after a judge confirmed his blood alcohol level was more than twice the legal limit.

Thoma's lawyer, Rob Cossi says Thoma doesn't want to officially comment at this time. Cossi says he hasn't received a copy of the police report yet and doesn't expect one until sometime next week.

Cossi did say Thoma is being cooperative with WSP during their investigation.

Spokane Police Chief Anne Kirkpatrick said it would be inappropriate for her to comment on Thoma's charges because her department is not investigating the incident.

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